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AgapeDoc, Psychologist
Category: Mental Health
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Experience:  Dr. W. D. Nicholas will help you find solutions to life's challenging issues.
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My grandchildren are being emotional abused for along time

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My grandchildren are being emotional abused for along time the oldest is 14yr boy. He tried to hang himself at 8yrs. old and even though a counselor was involved my daughter said he was just trying to get attention. My daughter won't talk about any of things going on. I can see the damage being done and I don't know where to turn. 696-kids hotline won't do anything because there are no physical signs.

As a grandparent how can I get help for them? The oldest child is failing in school, constantly belittled and is scapegoat of family. Told his mom he wants to kill himself and kill her and his dad. Lies about anything to avoid confrontation. Said, why not lie they don't believe anything I say anyway. cuts face of his dad out of pictures. Not his real dad but he has never been told. There different things going on with each of kids.
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Mental Health
Expert:  AgapeDoc replied 3 years ago.

AgapeDoc :

Thanks for contacting Just Answer. Let me see if I can help...

AgapeDoc :

Wow.... My heart goes out to you and the kids as well. This is a heartbreaking situation to say the least and I am so sorry you are suffering so.

AgapeDoc :

I'm sure it won't help much, but I can tell you that you are not the only grandparent in this (or a very similar) situation. Sometimes it brings at least a little relief to know you're not the only one.

AgapeDoc :

Anyway I can say that because I have dealt with literally dozens of similar situations in my years as a School Counselor, Guidance Director, and in private practice. I must tell you that the answer I have for you probably won't be enough to satisfy you, but it will be honest and it will be the best we have in these situations.

AgapeDoc :

Let me first say that it seems that you have done all you can up to this point. Your hands are tied somewhat as you have already experienced. Having said that, here is what you do.... Take measures to make sure the parents don't alienate you - if they already have you must do all you can to get them to "let you back in". This may mean doing things that you hate, such as supporting them emotionally and saying nice things to them even when it makes you nauseous to do so.

AgapeDoc :

You must be the one the kids know is "sane" and you must build relationships with them. Let them know that this is not normal and also... AND THIS IS VERY IMPORTANT... let them know that it won't always be this way. Be the light at the end of the tunnel. I know it's very tough (boy there's an understatement!) but it can be done. Kids are more resilient than we think - but your role is absolutely KEY if its' anything like the other similar situations I have dealt with over the years.

AgapeDoc :

In the meantime read the book, A Boy Called It if you haven't already done so. It is an autobiography of a man who was severely abused as a boy. He details how he survived and what was going through his mind when he was a kid.

AgapeDoc :

How am I doing so far?

Customer:

I understand what you are saying and yes I have read" A Boy Called It". I try to stay in an open relationship with my daughter, however as much as she emotionally abuses the children, her husband verbally and emotionally abuses both her and the children. She tries to walk on eggshells to prevent upsetting him and yet she acts like nothing is wrong. I don't think she can face the truth. She will not allow her 13 yr old daughter to go to counseling. My granddaughter has been telling me and asking her mom to let her go to counseling for three years. She, my granddaughter is the major caretaker of the family, so much so that she thinks at some level she is the mother and talks to her own mother as if she is. When she is finally under so much stress she breaks down with me. She says she is so stressed. She between her parents when they are fighting. When I ask her if she wants me to go with he to talk with her mom the answer is no because she is afraid it will make things worse.

Customer:

My husband and I have been giving the children (4 of them) emotional support and a safe haven because we live only a mile away. When I have tried to talk with my daughter about the kids she says that they know to get to me and the exaggerate things. The 2 older ones like staying with us. At times they have stayed for 2 weeks and we have never heard from the parents.

Customer:

Are there circumstances when a 13 yr old can see a counselor without a parents permission. Money is not a problem as far as payment to a counselor.

Customer:

I will wait to hear from you. I really appreciate having someone to explain things to and to get support. Are there groups for grandparents who are in situations like this?

AgapeDoc, Psychologist
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 197
Experience: Dr. W. D. Nicholas will help you find solutions to life's challenging issues.
AgapeDoc and other Mental Health Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 3 years ago.
I did reply to exoert. will I receive another answer or do I need to do something else?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.
After reading the answer I was given I hit reply and wrote more and asked more questions. My responses apparently headed as spongeJA. Not sure what that means. So do I need to start at the beginning again??
Expert:  AgapeDoc replied 3 years ago.
Hi again,
I'm away from my computer (on my druid right now) so let me get back on my computer to answer. It will be later this evening, so please hang in there for a bit. Thanks
Expert:  AgapeDoc replied 3 years ago.
OK... Let me answer your next two questions. The only way a 13 year old can see a counselor without parental permission is to do it behind parents back - that's if you can find a counselor to do it and if you did would it be worth the risk of parents finding out? So, it's not impossible, but it is extremely unlikely.

As for a support group for grandparents there are groups such as this in many areas of the country. I can highly recommend you go to the website meetup.com. You may find such a support group in your area or if not, you can certainly start one and this website can help you with that.

Thank you again and please know that you are in my prayers - as is your whole family.
AgapeDoc, Psychologist
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 197
Experience: Dr. W. D. Nicholas will help you find solutions to life's challenging issues.
AgapeDoc and other Mental Health Specialists are ready to help you

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